A question I hear often is will I be able to get social security disability if I have cancer, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, etc. Getting social security disability does not depend on your diagnosis or the name of your illness. It depends on the symptoms and how they affect your ability to work a full time job, which exists in sufficient numbers in the economy, while considering your age, education and work experience. What does this mean?
Well, the social security administration looks at your age in deciding whether to grant you disability benefits. The older you are, the easier it is to get benefits. They also look at your education. If you are highly educated then is it less likely that you will be found eligible for social security disability benefits because there will be more jobs that you can perform. The Social Security Administration only has to produce one job that you perform full-time in order to disqualify you for benefits. They also look at your work history. If you have a lot of experience in your field and have held different types of jobs then you are more likely to have transferable skills. This means that although you may no longer be able to perform your past jobs, there may be other jobs that you can transfer your skills to that you can perform.
What does sufficient numbers mean- well the Social Security Administration has not really defined that number. So what does it come down to- you have to show that your symptoms prevent you from working a full-time job that exists in sufficient numbers in the economy, considering your age, education and work experience. If you have cancer, but it is in remission and you feel great and can work your old job, than chances are you will not be eligible for benefits. If you have arthritis and your hands swell up so much that you cannot type or hold a pen for long periods of time then you may be eligible for benefits. It is important to remember to focus on your symptoms, not the name of your disability.
If you need help call a Buffalo, New York Social Security attorney at 716-831-1111.
Please remember that this is just general information, and everyone’s situation is unique. This article should not be considered legal advice.